There are times when you know you should be a bit bothersome and persistent, because sometimes the reward is worth the trouble.
We arrived at Place de la Bourse at 10:30 PM with the German band Get Well Soon. We had made some noise in the empty Place, danced with a guy who sold oysters and made us taste them, and shot a bunch of beautiful songs (which will be online soon). It was our director Colin’s first Take Away Show. We had already been shooting for an hour, but a rumor compelled us to keep going.
Bloc Party had just finished their surprise show at the Nouveau Casino, and guys from their label told us they’d probably go have some drinks at the Truskel right after. Get Well Soon had to meet their team there, so we lead them to the pub, and then asked them to play a song in front of it.
While the Germans were playing, Kele Okereke popped out of the bar. He was standing next to me, and he asked me who was singing and what they were doing there. I told him it was a Take Away Show, and he said shyly, “Oh great, that’s good.” I patted him on the back, joking, “Hey, good timing! After they finish, it’s your turn!”
We’d been told it would not be easy. A year before, we already tried to set up a Take Away Show with them in London, with the support of JD Beauvallet, but nothing could convince them. They never play acoustic. They’re very shy. It’s impossible. So, back in the present, on October 14th, we tried harder.
We had some help. Matthieu of Coop was drunk and happy. Both of the bands’ managers were drunk and happy. We were also drunk and happy, and that’s how Kele found himself pressed against a wall, facing a dozen enthusiastic people, urging him to play a song.
We cut during the editing, because it took us 25 minutes to talk them into doing it. Just enough time to stop him from running away, go get Russel, decide what song they were going to play. When Kele finally started singing, Colin was pressed against him, and it felt like Kele was jumping from a diving board too high for him. He caught us off-guard. Everyone was speechless. There’s nothing more to add. Five minutes of rare sincerity, two artists doing something with no safety net and without really understanding why. They took that risk, and we thank them for it.
(Translation by Nora)